A restaurant that many called their favorite in the Hudson Valley has served its last customer, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Late Monday night, the owners of Sweet Peas Cafe in New Windsor announced on Facebook the COVID-19 pandemic has forced them to permanently close the cafe.

"Although, we continued to be proactive in finding a solution to continue to love and support our customers at our beloved Sweet Peas Café, the café has struggled to remain financially viable through the pandemic," Sweet Peas Cafe wrote on Facebook. "We are saddened and sorry to have to announce that we will have to permanently close the café. We mourn the time we spent sharing good company and food with our active and veteran community. We want to thank everyone who has supported us and the community throughout the years and especially during the pandemic."

Kim McDonnell opened up the cafe in 2014, offering fresh breakfast and lunch meals. Each menu item was named after a song. McDonnell sold the business in 2018 to "move on with other creative adventures." Nina Baldassare and John Zippo purchased the cafe, keeping the cafe's name and hit menu items.

Nina and John instantly connected with the cafe's regular customers who were thrilled the "fun & funky cafe with great food and exceptional service," as the cafe's website states, was kept exactly as they remembered it.

"The friendships and business thrived pre-pandemic at 100 percent capacity and that was an accomplishment to be proud of. Words cannot express how amazing it has been to serve our loyal customers. The owners and staff at the café, honor the lifelong friends and memories made throughout the years. Our dear customers and friends, thank you for your patronage, laughs, celebrations, and mostly love for our active and veteran military communities. We wish you all the good health and peace in life," Sweet Peas Cafe wrote in its closing announcement on Facebook.

In April 2019, an Empire Award, the State Senate’s highest honor, was presented to Baldassare for her work in honoring the memory of her son and making Sweet Peas Cafe a place of comfort for active duty and veterans of the armed forces.

Her son, 20-year-old Marine Corporal Daniel Baldassare, was one of 16 killed when a military plane crashed in July 2018 in Mississippi. Daniel was assigned to the Marine Corps Reserve unit at Stewart Airport.

Senator James Skoufis said Sweet Peas Cafe was a "haven for military personnel and offered them all a place to find solace."

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